trends

The Future of Adult Content

Stewart Tongue
As the marketing of the online adult industry continues to evolve, the ways in which adult content gets produced and distributed continues to change as well. While many webmasters have claimed traffic is king, the poor ratios and incredible traffic of tube sites has some rethinking their point of view. Content is an increasingly important piece of the puzzle and the debate over which way to produce content most profitably has heated up in recent months.

"PIMPROLL has been on both sides of the content market as a provider and a buyer. What we are seeing now is convergence of many segments of the adult market into a more unified industry with a lot of opportunity for strategic partnerships among companies that each specialize in their core strengths," said David K. of PIMPROLL. "Having worked with Lethal Hardcore in the past and seen the exceptional quality of their studio content, our blockbuster deal to exclusively market their digital content made sense for their company and ours. It brings us the highest quality studio content to sell and gives them the full reach of PIMPROLL marketing worldwide, as a premium distribution channel with built-in affiliate services and seamless management. The results have been exceptional and continue to rise for both companies and for the many affiliates profiting from the pairing."

"The move among a select group of top tier DVD brands and Online adult giants toward strategic partnerships makes sense for many reasons, most notably the vertical integration of new products into several distribution channels," Clement of VideosZ said. "Our arrangement with the best studios from the DVD era of adult entertainment including Zero Tolerance, Third Degree and Black Ice Pass allows us to put the same skills and resources that have made VideosZ a success to work for other product lines as well. Our core business has always been focused on the distribution of high quality non-exclusive content. Their focus has always been the creation of exactly the kinds of content that have sold best for us and our affiliates. The combination on ZTOD.com and the other sites has been both easy and profitable for everyone involved right from the start."

As with any market trend, there are always those who see a different path to profits. Private has long been one of the most highly respected brands as an adult studio but when offered the chance to partner with a company more attuned to online sales, they have opted instead to bring Internet marketing expertise in-house. Attracting well-known Internet marketing experts like Erwin, formerly of Payserve.com, Private is preparing to launch a new flagship domain in the spring of 2010.

"Keeping online in-house we feel Private is a company uniquely positioned to actually achieve a level of quality of content which can't be created or duplicated by any other company out there," said Erwin from Private.com. "Also with the acquisition of Gamelink and Sureflix we obtained some serious Internet resources, so the combination of tech and quality content gives us confidence that we'll be able to launch a truly special paysite and affiliate program. It an exciting time to be going Private!"

For others, the future of adult content was much more about the emergence of consumer technology than any new business model. "I see the future of adult content becoming more advanced with regard to the quality and delivery of video content. Most studios and content providers are already shooting in HD and some web companies are starting to deliver in HD. High encoded formats, such as 720p and 1020p are becoming standard. Technology never goes backwards, so as the technology continues to improve, so will the quality and delivery methods to the end user."

For some studios that have been filming in the highest quality for decades, the long overdue mass-acceptance of broadband and better quality monitors is a welcome precursor of the content to come.

"Playgirl has been producing high quality content for women, gay men and bisexuals for more than thirty years," Vincent Stephens of Playgirl.com said. "The content side of the equation really has not changed much from a production standpoint for us because we always sought to create the best pictorial and video content possible. What has changed tremendously is the ability of our subscribers to enjoy content the way it was intended."

"Rather than creating high resolution images and needing to downsize them to stay with the parameters of a member's bandwidth connection or standardized magazine format we can now release incredibly clear visual imagery which takes full advantage of the broadband connections our users possess and the greatly increased screen sizes that are now ubiquitous," Stephens added. "In the coming year we expect the rapid growth of female consumers to continue and the celebrity models we have exclusively filmed like Levi Johnston, to draw them to the best known name in female adult entertainment. Our expanding online presence and affiliate program allows webmasters to capitalize on these trends while monetizing the supporting efforts of our traditional media connections."

Well-known industry shooter and adult program owner Easton, of EastonContent.com, seemed to relish the fact that content is finally starting to be seen on more of an equal footing with traffic procurement.

"At the end of the day, it's great to see so many adult site owners coming to the realization that content really matters," Easton said. "I've been stocking my own RoyalVault.com sites with 1920x1080 HD for nearly two years and while the massive DVD sites definitely have a place in the market, unless you plan to produce a site with ten thousand DVDs worth of material, your best chance at carving out a niche for yourself is with very high quality exclusive content."

"I keep hearing how the barrier for entry is lower than ever because people can build a paysite for five hundred bucks," Easton opined. "The fact is they can't build a profitable paysite for five hundred bucks and building an unprofitable paysite shouldn't be the goal of any adult company owner."

"The future of adult content is live in material," said Jay of Objectcube.com. "The proliferation of free content has really hampered the sale of video online and unfortunately, no matter how good that video is it won't sell well if it's also available for free."

"As bandwidth becomes less expensive the quality of the free content continues to improve so the best way to offer something unique is to provide it as a live interactive experience for a consumer," Jay added. "Even in the live cams market there is major room for growth with new technologies like the HD webcam system now available from Objectcube. The recent advancements in technology always need to be accounted for and it is now more possible than ever before to give a viewer the sensation that they are in the presence of a real sexual companion."

At a time when many affiliate marketers and smaller program owners seem to be thinking of ways to get out of the market, many key players in the future of adult online have reached the same conclusion from a variety of different focal points. As far as content is concerned, it is time to go big or go home.

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